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blackglasspirate Mon May 02, 2011 12:21 pm

I was planning on repainting my top because it has faded streaks in it. I'm replacing the pop top seal, so I figured I'd do it all at once.
I read a lot of posts about the subject, but still have some questions.

I would like to keep the textured, bumpy look on the top. If I sand the top with 180(as suggested in other threads), am I going to end up with a smooth top? If so, is there any way around that?

I also saw a suggestion for using this product from gowesty instead of painting ( http://gowesty.com/ec_view_details.php?id=3946&category_id=347 )

My top isn't too bad (picture below). There's no fiberglass poking out, just some streaks in the paint. I guess from oxidation. I used penetrol in the past, but it doesn't seem to help with the streaks now, it just makes them shiny streaks.

My original plan was to just clean/pressure wash, and paint. I heard Interlux was good to use. If anyone has advice on the texture thing, or if my top isn't bad enough to warrant repainting everything and the Gowesty stuff will do the trick, please let me know!

Thanks.


CQ Mon May 02, 2011 12:26 pm

I used a cheap roller from Homedepot with the Interlux after priming it. Still has texture on it and yes I sanded it too. I pretty much follwed these instructions and the thing looks brand spanking new.

http://www.vanagonauts.com/Roof---Maintainence,-Painting135.htm


Here is a link to my pics.
https://picasaweb.google.com/cesar.quiros/Vanagon?authkey=Gv1sRgCIqbhsnGk-6IuQE&feat=directlink

blackglasspirate Mon May 02, 2011 8:27 pm

Thanks for the link! Yours looks great. Did you use an Interlux primer or something else?
The article makes it sound pretty easy. I don't know if I'd be able to wait a full 24 hrs between each coat of paint, but I think I should be able to make it work. It's my daily driver, so I have to get it done in a weekend!

RenoVanMan Mon May 02, 2011 9:07 pm

Use a scotch brite pad...... I just did my this last weekend and it turned out great!

CQ Mon May 02, 2011 9:08 pm

Yes I used the Interlux primer. You can always drive it without a top while you work on it.. I drove it 2 hours away like that 2 :)

Good luck.

PDXWesty Mon May 02, 2011 9:21 pm

You shouldn't need to sand it at all. You'll do more damage than good. I would use a good water based cleaner/degreaser and scrub it with green scotch brite pads. Unless it's been painted before, you'll only need to clean it. The original tops weren't painted, but the color was in the gel coat.

I'm not sure how the paint will go over the previous applications of Penetrol though. I have no experience with that.

CQ Mon May 02, 2011 9:30 pm

Forgot your color is in the gel coat, I wonder if a good car buffer can make that shine through again with some rubbing compound or something.

blackglasspirate Mon May 02, 2011 9:32 pm

Thanks for the input. I'm pretty sure the Penetrol has work off. It usually only lasted 6 months or so, and it has been much longer than that since my last application. I guess I could do a light sanding, just to make sure it's all off. I was worried that 220 grit would be too abrasive.
I'll see if there's a marine store around here that I can get some interlux paint from. Hopefully they have the right color.

blackglasspirate Mon May 02, 2011 9:34 pm

CQ wrote: Forgot your color is in the gel coat, I wonder if a good car buffer can make that shine through again with some rubbing compound or something.

I was wondering about that. That's why I was also wondering if the stuff from gowesty would work well. Maybe doing a full paint job is overkill? Not sure...

PDXWesty Tue May 03, 2011 7:49 am

My top looked like yours - faded grey. I did a full base coat/clear coat paint job and it was totally worth it. I just scrubbed it clean, removed the bolts, seals, skylight, luggage rack, and had it painted. Probably 4 hours or so in prep that I did myself. All new seals afterwards. It still looks perfect after 5 years. It has a texture still which I think looks fine. I didn't try to shooth it out.

Here's a close up shot (with some other things going on).


blackglasspirate Tue May 03, 2011 10:33 am

Man, that looks great! I didn't realize how expensive that Interlux paint is. Must be some high quality stuff! I emailed Gowesty to find out more about their product, although I'd really like to do the full paint job. It's turning out to be a little more expensive than I thought, especially with my other summer projects on the van.

j_dirge Tue May 03, 2011 11:06 am

blackglasspirate wrote: Man, that looks great! I didn't realize how expensive that Interlux paint is. Must be some high quality stuff! I emailed Gowesty to find out more about their product, although I'd really like to do the full paint job. It's turning out to be a little more expensive than I thought, especially with my other summer projects on the van.
If you aren't ready to do it.. Don't.
Don't paint, that is.

A good cleaning and a decent wax product applied buys one year. And you can think on this a bit. And (my opinion only) Penetrol treatment is really not better than a wax treatment.. It may look nicer for a few weeks longer.. but does very little in terms of protection that a regular waxing does not do.

Regardless the product you choose, this type of project requires commitment to prep fairly well.. and see thru to completion. There's no "halfway".

It you aren't ready to spend $100+ in materials, you may not realize the level of effort that goes into a project like this.. nor appreciate what it means for it to last for 10 yrs plus.


Interlux, Petit, and similar are very high quality paints with excellent application properties for the DIY. I have seen spraybooth-like finishes done with a simple short roller and a tip.
They may cost a few more dollars.. but speaking from experience in the boating world.. it is money well spent. A reasonably well applied Interlux type paint will last 10 yrs or more. (Particularly lighter shades and whites.. reds, yellows, and darker tints can fade where UV is strong.. or at least the older paints did.)

As noted above.. do not sand.. clean and scuff with scotchbrite.

And allow the paint to dry well. It dries to touch quickly, but continues to harden for weeks after. Avoid mishandling surfaces in general (scratches) but most especially for the first 6 months or so... through one good dry warm summer.


Penetrol?
It was developed for other purposes, originally, and has been used as a flow agent additive to paints back in the oil-based days.
Penetrol should not cause problems where paint is being applied over, particularly where the Penetrol was applied more than a few months ago.

Most of the Penetrol will come off with a good cleaning.

Regardless,.. you should do test applications of paint anyway.. When you do that you will see if any contaminants are causing the paint to pull back.

blackglasspirate Tue May 03, 2011 11:45 am

Thanks for the input. I don't mind spending 100+, I just saw some super high prices on interlux paint and it got me worried. Maybe I just need to look around more. I'd rather do it right and not worry about it.

So, do I need to do a clear coat on this too? Or is the base enough? I wasn't seeing an interlux clear coat, but still need to do some searching. Some of these websites seem buggy.

I'll do some more research and post back.

blackglasspirate Tue May 03, 2011 11:58 am

Alright, I think I found what I need:

http://www.wholesalemarine.com/pc/ILX-4279Q/270008...White.html

http://www.wholesalemarine.com/pc/ILX-4100Q/270008...Paint.html


2 quarts of primer and 3(for the 2.5 needed) of base.

Sound good?

j_dirge Tue May 03, 2011 11:58 am

blackglasspirate wrote: So, do I need to do a clear coat on this too? Or is the base enough? I wasn't seeing an interlux clear coat, but still need to do some searching. Some of these websites seem buggy.

I'll do some more research and post back.
If you choose the Interlux, Pettite type of paint.. No clear coat.

These are mostly one-part marine enamel and polyurethane paints.. very easy to apply, with roller and a tipping brush.

Clear coats are typically used where automotive type enamels and polyurethanes are sprayed on.. I don't have experience spraying automotive paints.

blackglasspirate Tue May 03, 2011 11:58 am

Awesome. No clearcoat makes it a lot simpler!

j_dirge Tue May 03, 2011 12:30 pm

blackglasspirate wrote: Awesome. No clearcoat makes it a lot simpler!
The Brightsides product you linked has worked well for me on boating projects.

You may find that two coats are necessary..
Do not apply in direct sun!.. avoid applying on real hot days. Likewise do not apply if rain, dew, or fog is expected within 24hrs of application.
Waitign for goo weather can make a very big difference in dryin time and finish quality.

Read the instructions on the can, as I beleive you can re-coat without hitting it with scotchbrite again.. if you recoat within a specified time period.

Do some tests and practice application before diving into the big job..
A good place to test is the luggage bin, under where the seal overlaps.

Best of luck and report back with pics!

Beware.. "Gloss" is very glossy! :D
Do you know the "roll and tip" method?

blackglasspirate Tue May 03, 2011 12:46 pm

Oh, I'll definitely post back with pics. As long as I do a decent job, anyway.

Maybe High Gloss is too much? I didn't see a product of theirs that wasn't high gloss. The guy in the link referenced earlier just said that he used semi-gloss Interlux Premium yacht paint. I couldn't find that though. Maybe I should keep looking. I don't want to be blinded by looking at the sun reflecting off of my pop top!

I'm not too familiar with the roll and tip method, other than what I've read online. Seems to be applying the paint with a roller and then brushing back the opposite way with a foam brush?
Sounds like I may need a second mate to help on this one.

j_dirge Tue May 03, 2011 1:06 pm

http://www.jamestowndistributors.com/userportal/sh...t+Finishes
Flattening agent.

And you can also purcahse a non-skid additive for use inside the luggage bin..

Its hard to say if the gloss is too much. Personal preference.
It can be shocking, yet pleasing, when you first absorb the "new" look against what you are used to looking at.. the old finish.
And it may shame your van's paint job. :lol:

The gloss will dull somewhat overtime, though. So I'd not lose sleep over the decision.


IIRC, my local marine store had pints and half pints of these additives.. Didn't break the bank to try them out if the small qunaitites are available.

I have used the non-skid additive for interior surfaces, too.. to provide some texture. I was thinking I'd use it inside the luggage rack if/when I get around to doing mine.

Lots of possibilites putting these materials to work.

blackglasspirate Tue May 03, 2011 6:22 pm

Ahh, I didn't think about the flattening agent. I don't mind a gloss at all, I'm just not sure what to expect from the high gloss and don't want it to be too much.

Now I just need to read up on the roll and tip method, get some paint, and I'm good to go.
I'm hoping to do this without removing the entire top, just the forward rack. Hopefully it works!



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